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Press Release

Pianist Thomas Schultz To Be in Residence  at Bard College, March 30 to 31

Jennifer Wai-Lan Huang
ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.—The Bard College Conservatory of Music and the John Cage Trust at Bard College are cosponsoring the residency of pianist Thomas Schultz at Bard College. On Tuesday, March 30, at 8:00 p.m., Schultz will give a recital in Olin Auditorium. Free and open to the public, no reservations are necessary. The program will include Prelude for Meditation (1944), Music for Marcel Duchamp (1947), One (1987), Dream (1948), and One5 (1990) all by John Cage (1912–92); Walking, Walking (2003) by Hyo-shin Na (b. 1959); and Winnsboro Cotton Mill Blues (1979) and Piano Piece Nr. 4 (1977) by Frederic Rzewski (b. 1938). Richard S. Ginell of the Los Angeles Times writes, “Thomas Schultz cuts a tall, imposing figure, and although he can fire the big technical guns at will, he seemed to be most interested in color, in exploiting the massive range of the Fazioli piano . . . notes exploded and were held within an inch of their lives. The upper treble glittered like icicles. Ghostly harmonics emerged in the distance . . . He captured the unrelenting driving elements of Rzewski's piece but also produced a variety of colors that went beyond even the composer’s own virtuosic performance on record.”

On Wednesday, March 31, at 4:00 p.m., Schultz will also give a workshop entitled “The Piano Music of John Cage” in Bard Hall. Free and open to the public, no registration is necessary. “Since Cage wrote such a great deal of music for solo piano, my talk about these pieces will touch on the main elements of his music in general—sound (the prepared piano pieces), silence (4’33”), indeterminacy (the time-bracket pieces, the Etudes Australes, Winter Music, the Concert for Piano and Orchestra), and theater (Water Music). I will also mention a few works of related composers such as Feldman, Lachenmann, Wolff, Takahashi, and Na,” says Schultz.

Thomas Schultz has established an international reputation both as an interpreter of music from the classical tradition—particularly Bach, Beethoven, Schubert, and Liszt—and as one of the leading exponents of the music of our time. Among his recent engagements are solo recitals in New York, San Francisco, Berlin, Ghent, Seoul, Taipei, and Kyoto, and at the Schoenberg Festival in Vienna, the Piano Spheres series in Los Angeles, Korea’s Tongyoung Festival, the Festival of New American Music in Sacramento, and the April in  Santa Cruz Festival. He has also appeared as a soloist at the Other Minds Festival in San Francisco, and in chamber music performances with the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players, the Da Camera Society of Houston, Robert Craft’s 20th Century Classics Ensemble, and St. Lawrence String Quartet. In 2005 he gave a series of master classes on the piano music of the Second Viennese school at the Schoenberg Center in Vienna.

Schultz’s recitals are notable for programming that celebrates the continuing vitality of the piano repertoire, juxtaposing the old and the new or focusing solely on new works. He has worked closely with such eminent composers as Cage, Feldman, Wolff, Rzewski, Earle Brown, Jonathan Harvey, and Elliott Carter (in performances of the Double Concerto at the Colorado Music Festival and at Alice Tully Hall in New York).

Since 2002, Schultz has included in his recitals works written especially for him by Frederic Rzewski (The Babble, 2003); Christian Wolff (Touch, 2002; Long Piano, 2005); Hyo-shin Na (Rain Study, 1999; Walking, Walking, 2003); Walter Zimmermann (AIMIDE, 2001/02); Boudewijn Buckinx (The Floating World, 2004); and Yuji Takahashi (For Thomas Schultz, 2001).

His recording of Stravinsky’s Concerto for Two Solo Pianos is on the MusicMasters label; he can be heard in chamber works of Earle Brown on a Newport Classics recording and his recordings of works by the Korean composer Hyo-shin Na on CDs from the Seoul and TopArt labels have received special recognition. His solo CDs (a double CD of the Goldberg Variations of Bach and Rzewski’s The People United Will Never Be Defeated and a CD of works written for him by Takahashi, Buckinx, and Wolff) are on the Wooden Fish label.

Schultz’s musical studies were with John Perry, Leonard Stein and Philip Lillestol. He has been a member of the piano faculty at Stanford University since 1994. More information about Thomas Schultz can be found at his website:


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This event was last updated on 03-22-2010